142 Tasting Notes


Oh I love my Eco-Cha oolong sampler. This was a surprise! As evidence of my limited oolong knowledge, this most closely reminds me of…American Tea Room’s Lavender Sencha. I’m guessing other lavender teas similarly have that round, floral, warm, back-of-the-throat taste, and this oolong does too, but of course on a light, green oolong base instead. I didn’t know oolongs were ever that floral. It’s really working for me, and I’ll definitely keep this around.

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Interesting. It’s like they took the Mandala milk oolong and dialed it back a touch. Just a touch. It’s still terrifically tasty, but for now I continue to prefer the Mandala.

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My first Eco-Cha! I got the oolong sample set, and if it all lives up to this first cup, I’ll be moving to Taiwan. It reminds me of eating carrots I’d just pulled from the garden when I was little, complete with just a touch of dirt and that crazy freshness and vegetal tang, with a touch of sweetness. When my tea collection finally arrives where it appears to be heading (toward an exclusive, oolong-only club), this tea will be there.

Eco-Cha 一口茶

Hi Flowery! So happy to hear you enjoyed your first cup of Eco-Cha! We do hope the rest lives up to the first cup. Can’t wait to hear what you think of the other 2 teas in the Oolong Flight (Dong Ding and Jin Xuan).

Thanks for posting this note!

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Well, that settles it. I think I’m overly sensitive to smoke in oolongs, and this is not my thing. Mandala’s colored species and milk oolong (candy oolongs?) are my favorites. This isn’t even especially smoky – it’s just the note I detect first. There’s a lot more going on here. I’m going to skip rating it at all, since I should probably just back away from this whole category of teas.


I’m not a fan of the darker roasted oolongs either :)


me neither.

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drank Silver Buds Yabao by Verdant Tea
142 tasting notes

Remember the first time you had milk oolong and said ‘this is just TEA?’ before buying a pound of it? (No? That was just me?) Silver Buds Yabao is kind of like that. A revelation. Yes, it’s a pu’er, and that comes through quite clearly, but … actually, maybe that’s the difference. None of the muddiness. Depth and lightness and complexity all in one cup. Verdant even suggests icing it, and yes, thank you, I think I will do that too. Despite its lightness, there is nothing delicate about this tea.

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For an unexpected comparison, I just drank Verdant’s Laoshan Black Chocolate Genmaicha the other day, and this is surprisingly similar! Mind you, it is not a substitute. The chocolate nut notes are what remind me of the LBCG, though this has less tea flavor and a light floral overlay. I suppose they are technically both flavored/blended, but my palate tires sooner of these flavors than the at least partly tea-leaf based flavors of the Laoshan. Though I might have really liked this tea in another context, it’s hard to see the point of drinking it with the Laoshan around. And it leaves a ‘flavored’ aftertaste.

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It’s nice to be back to oolongs after testing nearly every black under the sun for an upcoming guest. I love their complexity, and this is no exception. Once I get past the basic tea smoke, there is unmistakeable fruit – to the point that it leaves behind a sweet taste on my tongue. And maybe a little minty tingle? Not the flavor, just the tingle. Great stuff.

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“…light roasted coffee.” Yes, I can certainly see that. Now that I’ve had the holy trinity of Zhu Rong, Laoshan Black, and Laoshan Black Chocolate Genmaicha, I think I have to make room for all three. Zhu Rong is the lightest of the three, and a delicious, easy going all day tea. I’m not sure I want to ice this one – it might be a touch too delicate for it. Another interesting lesson – I’ve been exploring these and other terrific Chinese black teas at the same time I’m working through an assortment of Dammann Freres flavored blacks. I was optimistic about the flavored teas, since I love the idea of them and am not at all a purist about my tea, but these Chinese blacks are kind of making them look silly. I think I’ll just have to ice all the flavored ones. When I’m craving a hot cup of tea, it’s these smooth blacks that are calling me.

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Meh. It’s a bit too bright and lemony for my tastes. I like a deeper bergamot and had hoped the orange would really come through.

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I love cooking, gardening, photography, studying languages, alleys, riding bikes everywhere, snowboarding, travel, dogs, and oddly, housekeeping (as much as one can with another career). Also working on the lifelong dream of starting a business.

If I could only drink four teas ever again, they would be Black Beauty (Mandala), Huang Zhi Xiang Phoenix Mountain Dancong (Verdant), Silver Buds Yabao (Verdant), and Shan Lin Xi Concubine (Eco-Cha, at least the fall 2013). These teas are ridiculous.

Current tea shops under exploration:
Camellia Sinensis

Wish list:
Mountain Tea
Den’s Tea
Taiwan Tea Crafts
Tea Drunk
Suggestions welcome!


Orlando, Florida

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